* Spot gold may test resistance at $1,833/oz - technicals
* Gold likely to see gradual trend higher for the year - analyst
July 15 (Reuters) - Gold prices hovered near a four-week peak on Thursday after U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Jeremy Powell soothed investor fears by reassuring that he was in no rush to tighten policy, lifting the metal’s appeal as an inflation hedge.
Spot gold was flat at $1,826.27 per ounce, as of 0443 GMT, having hit a peak since June 16 at $1,829.55 on Wednesday.
U.S. gold futures edged up 0.1% to $1,827.00.
Powell stuck to the view on Wednesday that the current price increases are transitory and the Fed expects to continue its bond-buying until there is “substantial further progress” on jobs, with interest rates pinned near zero likely until at least 2023.
Large stimulus measures tend to support gold, which is often considered a hedge against inflation and currency debasement.
Growing inflationary pressures are going to keep investors on edge, but they are becoming more comfortable about the Fed’s stance, allowing them to continue to build positions in the market, ANZ analyst Daniel Hynes said.
“The conditions are relatively supportive of further gains (in gold) ... It’s not going to be a sprint but a very gentle, gradual trend higher for the year at the moment,” Hynes added.
Weighing on bullion’s appeal, the dollar found some footing during the Asian trade on the back of coronavirus jitters, after Powell’s comments caused the greenback to retreat from recent peaks.
On the technical front, spot gold may test a resistance at $1,833 per ounce, a break above could lead to a gain at $1,853, according to Reuters technical analyst Wang Tao.
Among other precious metals, silver edged up 0.1% to $26.26 per ounce.
Platinum was flat at $1,128.99 per ounce, having climbed to its highest level since June 16 in the previous session, while palladium fell 0.7% to $2,809.69.
Reporting by Eileen Soreng in Bengaluru; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips and Vinay Dwivedi